Chicago Alderman and her chief of staff indicted on bribery charges

Accused of accepting bribes in exchange for political favors, a Chicago Alderman and her chief of staff were indicted Thursday on federal bribery charges. The chief of staff was also charged in a separate scheme to purchase Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits at a discount.

According to the indictment, Chicago Alderman Carrie Austin and her chief of staff, Chester Wilson Jr., conspired with construction contractors offering to provide free home improvements for assistance in acquiring city development projects between 2016 and 2019. Both Austin and Wilson allegedly abused their positions by accepting bribes, including free home improvement materials, home improvement services, furniture, and appliances.

Between December 2016 and February 2019, multiple text messages and emails recorded conversations between the public officials and the contractors with requests for kitchen cabinets, bathroom tiles, granite countertops, etc. in exchange for help obtaining city development projects. Both Austin and Wilson allegedly made illicit requests for home improvement materials and services at properties owned by each of them.

Questioned by FBI agents on June 19, 2019, Austin allegedly gave false statements when she denied receiving bribes from the contractors. Austin only admitted to receiving a cake from one of the contractors.

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FBI Agents Raid Ohio House Speaker’s Home in Multi-Million Dollar Corruption Probe

The home of Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder has been raided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, as part of a probe into a multi-million dollar racketeering conspiracy, according to Dayton Daily News outlet.

It’s alleged that up to US$60 million in bribes have been paid to a state official and associates – while full details on the case are yet to be released, FBI Special Agent in Charge Chris Hoffman and US Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio David DeVillers are expected to brief the press later today.

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Illinois political powerhouse implicated in corruption probe

Longtime Illinois House Speaker and state Democratic Party chairman Michael Madigan is facing calls for his resignation after federal prosecutors implicated him in an alleged bribery scheme, which has resulted in utility company ComEd agreeing to a $200 million fine.

Federal prosecutors said that utility company ComEd admitted to providing jobs or contracts “for various associates of a high-level elected official for the state of Illinois.” While Madigan’s name was not mentioned, a federal court filing identifies the official as the Illinois House speaker.

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